Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump, even using causal values, is a terrible person. He has been accused of groping women, admitted to being a pervert, has been married several times, and has some nasty views about women and minorities. Why then is he still getting support from the paladins of virtue – the evangelical Christian community? It really isn’t that hard to see why.
I’m not going to detail on how terrible a human being Trump is, you can search the Internet for details on those points but he has been accused of groping women without consent, admitted to being a pervert by walking into a beauty pageant dressing room without permission, he has been married at three times having started two of those relationships while still married to another wife, and has expressed some vulgar views of women and minorities during campaign stops and on twitter. Yet some evangelicals and their leaders still support Trump.
Ralph Reed, a conservative Christian activist and the head of Trump’s religious advisory board, said that as the father of two daughters, he was disappointed by the “inappropriate” comments.
“But people of faith are voting on issues like who will protect unborn life, defend religious freedom, grow the economy, appoint conservative judges and oppose the Iran nuclear deal,” he said in an email.
He contrasted Trump with Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, saying that her “corrupt use of her office to raise funds from foreign governments and corporations and her reckless and irresponsible handling of classified material on her home-brewed email server, endangering US national security, that will drive the evangelical vote.”
“I think a 10-year-old tape of a private conversation with a TV talk show host ranks pretty low on their hierarchy of their concerns,” he said.
What is surprising was Reed was very vocal about the character of candidates when President Clinton was getting impeached for lying about having sex with another woman.
“Character matters, and the American people are hungry for that message,” the Times quotes Reed as saying. “We care about the conduct of our leaders, and we will not rest until we have leaders of good moral character.”
So why are some evangelicals (at least 60% in one poll) still favoring Trump if moral values mean so much to them? Part of the reason is because one candidate has a vagina and the other one grabs one without permission.
But white evangelicals’ anger toward Clinton, while at a fever pitch now, has been building for decades.
She symbolizes much that runs against their beliefs: abortion rights advocacy, feminism and, conversely, a rejection of biblical ideas of femininity and womanhood. Perhaps even more significantly, Hillary Clinton, as an outspoken and activist first lady, is inextricably tied in the minds of conservative Christians to their loss of the culture war battles beginning with Bill Clinton’s first term in 1993.
Michael Cromartie, director of a program on evangelicals and civic life at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, said that whenever he hears justification of Trump support, it is almost always couched as a way to keep Hillary Clinton from the presidency. Three-quarters of evangelicals cited dislike for Clinton as a major reason they support Trump, according to a recent Pew Research poll.
Some Christians also don’t believe a woman should be President:
Right Wing Watch reports Gary Dull, head of the Pennsylvania Pastors Network, said on the program that women serving in positions of political leadership is a sign that a society is “spiritually rotten” and under the judgment of God.
Making his argument against a woman president, Dull cited Isaiah 3, verse 12, and 1 Timothy 2, which he says “establishes a pattern” in the Bible that women are not to have authority over men. At one point Dull declared:
In God’s line of authority it seems very clear in the scripture that a woman should not be in authority over men, which would limit a woman from being the president of the United States of America or even a queen of some other particular nation.
All of this is a strong reason not to mix religion and politics.
If conservative religious people can pick and choose what values they choose to fight for then their morality is no better or more special than a secular person.
If conservative religious people can choose to defend a terrible man just because the other choice is a woman – it’s extra proof that Christians shouldn’t get any special attention during political campaigns or from elected officials. This should mean the end of National Day of Prayer for starters.
The ideal values for the United States is where we are all treated equally and we should reject candidates who don’t put that at the top of the list or who doesn’t believe in it at all.